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Student Support Services

Dr. Newman

Dr. Veda Newman

Greetings, Sandridge parents, students, and community members, My name is Dr. Veda Newman, and I was appointed Director of Student Support Services on July 1, 2022. 

I came to Sandridge SD 172 from Evergreen Park SD 124, where I served as Director of Student Support Services for over nine years. I confidently coordinated several departments, including Special Education, MTSS, Health, Extended Day, and Pre-K/Early Childhood. I have also held the following positions: Director of Special Education and English Learners for Richland School District 88a; Special Education Supervisor for Elgin School District U-46; Principal Consultant in the Special Education Division for the Illinois State Board of Education, and social worker with private agencies and a public school.

I am honored to be part of Sandridge School District 172. 



Dr. Veda Newman, Ed.D



Sandridge SD 172 Student Support Services play a crucial role in enhancing students' educational experiences. We believe in collaborative efforts with families, schools, students, and community partners to provide a comprehensive range of services. Our aim is to support every child's academic, social-emotional, and behavioral success. The Student Support Services department encompasses various programs, including Pre-K, Early Childhood, Special Education, English Language Learners, School Health Services, PBIS, and McKinney Vento. For more details, please reach out to Dr. Veda Newman, Assistant Superintendent at 708-895-8339.

Special Education

Sandridge SD 172 is committed to providing appropriate and effective educational programs for students with disabilities. Eligible students must meet specific criteria to be identified as a child with a disability. Once identified, an Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) is developed for the student.

As per state and federal regulations, students with disabilities who require special education services are entitled to a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). We believe in maintaining a continuum of options, and program placements are based on each student's individual needs.

Early Childhood

Our Early Childhood Program delivers specially designed instruction to eligible students aged 3 through 5. We offer integrated services provided by speech language pathologists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists.

Interpretation Services for IEP meetings

To ensure meaningful participation of all parents/guardians in IEP meetings, Sandridge is committed to providing interpretation services for parents as requested. To request an interpreter, please notify the case manager at least 10 days prior to the scheduled meeting to allow sufficient time to arrange for an interpreter.  Please contact Soledad Cisneros at to request an interpreter.

Pre-Kindergarten (Pre-K) Program 

The pre-K program is designed to provide eligible children with a structured classroom experience that is rich in language and literacy.   To determine eligibility for the pre-K program, Sandridge conducts regular developmental screening for children ages 3-5 years old to assess developmental progress.  In addition, children may be further evaluated for special education and/or bilingual services. For more information regarding pre-K screenings, please contact Soledad Cisneros at 708-893-8339.

Section 504

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 serves as a safeguard against disability-based discrimination. It is a civil rights statute that ensures students with disabilities receive equitable treatment and support comparable to their non-disabled peers.

Under Section 504, an impairment refers to any disability, long-term illness, or various conditions that significantly diminish a student's ability to access education due to learning, behavioral, or health-related factors. The term "substantially limits" is not precisely defined in federal regulations. When assessing substantial limitations, students are compared to their same-age, non-disabled peers in the general population, without considering the effects of medication or other mitigating measures.

Students eligible for a 504 Plan receive accommodations tailored to their identified needs and the extent to which their impairments substantially limit one or more major life activities.

School Health Services

Our School Health Professional works closely with families, students, teachers, and administrators to ensure high-quality, individualized, and responsive health services for students.

Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS)

Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is an evidenced based school-wide systems approach, aimed at enhancing school climate and promoting safer and more effective educational environments. Unlike a specific program or curriculum, PBIS is a process that centers around enhancing a school's capacity to teach behavioral expectations and provide support for positive behavior among all students.

The PBIS framework provides Sandridge with a structure to design, implement, and assess the effectiveness of comprehensive, school-wide behavior support systems. This includes establishing clear expectations for positive behavior and actively teaching those behaviors across all settings within the school community. For more information, please visit

Restraint, Isolated Time-Out, and Time Out (RTO)

The Illinois School Code was amended by Public Act 102-0339, signed into law on August 13, 2021. These amendments outline specific limitations for the use of physical restraint, time out, and isolated time out in schools. These interventions are now restricted to situations where a student's behavior presents an "imminent danger of serious physical harm to self or others."

Following each incident involving the use of RTO, schools are required to provide parents and guardians with the following information: a written summary of the incident, a copy of the RTO standards, and details about the rights of parents, guardians, and students.

To ensure compliance and promote a safe and supportive learning environment, Sandridge SD 172 has established an oversight team that is responsible for developing district-specific plans. These plans aim to implement procedures that minimize and ultimately eliminate the use of physical restraint, time out, and isolated time out (RTO).

McKinney-Vento Act

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has established procedures to ensure that homeless children and youth have equal educational opportunities for success, just like their peers. Addressing the increase in homelessness over the past years, we are committed to providing the necessary support. For more information on the McKinney-Vento Act in District 172, please email Elena LeGraff, Building Administrative Assistant at for more information.

Meet Our Staff


Ms K. Hale

Reading Specialist


Ms. J. Szorc

Social Worker


Ms. J. Thomas

Support Staff